Whether state or local, robotic process automation (RPA) offers government workforces a before and after moment. Before adopting RPA, many employees will grapple with heavy workloads that are recurring, time consuming and unexciting. After embracing RPA, these workers will have more time and freedom to pursue the duties they’re passionate about.
But RPA doesn’t change agencies overnight. Instead, agencies using RPA must use it to reimagine all their work. By determining which work best fits their bots – and which is better for their people – agencies can create “human in the loop” processes that transform how they deliver public services.
To understand how RPA can modernize government workforces for the 21st century, GovLoop spoke with Ron Jones, Senior Director – Technology Strategy, Public Sector, Blue Prism and Deb Rossi, Sales Director, Public Sector State, Local and Education (SLED) at Blue Prism, an RPA software provider.
Rossi said that agencies considering RPA should picture how it could aid their employees. “Think of all the boring, mundane and repetitive tasks,” she said. “Imagine what it would be like to come to work every day and have an array of personal assistants to do it for you. RPA is a revolutionary way of working.”
Takeaway: RPA gives agencies a chance to upgrade their work from the ground up through automation and digital transformation.
For evidence, consider social workers who often focus on administrative case work rather than helping families. RPA can assist these public servants with such time-consuming tasks as filing documents and let them focus on more meaningful labors instead.
“RPA streamlines and shortens work for government employees,” Rossi said. “The repetitive and rules-based tasks can be performed by the robot. The higher-value, more complex work can be performed by a human.” RPA bots supplement humans rather than replace them. According to Rossi, this distinction is crucial for agencies dividing their workloads between their digital and physical workers.
“RPA is not threatening,” she said. “We at Blue Prism refer to them as ‘digital assistants.’ You’ve got to think about implementing RPA with the goal of how it helps your agency achieve its mission.”
Perhaps most importantly, RPA can help make agencies as innovative as private-sector companies. Private-sector employees are accustomed to tools such as RPA, and agencies that add them to their toolkits will become more attractive to potential talent.
“By merging human ingenuity with RPA’s Digital Workforce, we are transforming the nature of work entirely.” – Ron Jones, Senior Director – Technology Strategy, Public Sector, Blue Prism.
RPA can lend agencies a hand with all these problems and more. Using providers such as Blue Prism, agencies can meet challenges from cybersecurity, recruitment and other concerns. Blue Prism’s Connected-RPA strategy is focused on managing RPA as a strategic platform, not just on developing individual bots. “Blue Prism’s connected-RPA simultaneously unburdens government employees and provides opportunity to create even more value and job satisfaction,” Jones said.
This blog post is an excerpt from our new ebook, Your New Digital Coworker, download the ebook to explore how state and local agencies, such as Montgomery County, MD’s, Department of Finance, embraced robotic process automation (RPA) and how it’s impacting their workforce.
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